Tutor profile: Meagan B.
How can I craft a good sentence?
Many beginning writers try to sound academic or professional when writing essays or short stories. They will often try to write long wordy sentences thinking this is the way professionals write. Or maybe they don't have enough content for a piece, and will add unnecessary words to fulfill the page requirement. The best way to write sentences is to make them clear and concise. Take out extra filler words. Vary your sentence structure throughout a piece. Alternate between shorter sentences and longer sentences in your writing. Read your writing out loud, if it does not flow off the tongue then you must make changes to your sentences. This is an example of a wordy sentence: There was this cat that liked to play with it's toy mouse that was blue. An example of a good sentence: The cat loved to play with his toy mouse.
What is the best thing to keep in mind when reading ancient literature, and how do I effectively read it?
Ancient literature helps us understand who we are as humans. I think when reading and comparing different ancient texts it is important to ask ourselves: Is there a basic human condition? How does an ancient Egyptian compare to the roman poet Catullus? Are there basic human desires? These are very important questions especially when thinking about writing an essay. The best way to read ancient texts is to read them closely. When I took my first ancient literature class I kept a notebook beside me and summarized each page in my notebook. That way I could stop and think about what I just read. This helped me retain information, and can be particularly helpful when having to memorize for quizzes or tests.
What is a rhetorical analysis paper? How do you write one?
A rhetorical analysis paper deals with a close reading of a text. It is looking at specific rhetorical devices a writer uses in their piece. Simply, it is arguing whether or not a piece of writing is effective. Writing a rhetorical analysis is not summarizing a piece of writing. It is figuring out what the writer is trying to say in the piece, and then evaluating whether or not the writer was effective in getting us to feel a certain way or believe something. Then we can form an argument whether the writer was effective, and then use specific examples of what the writer used to help us believe him. Here is a sample thesis I wrote as a freshman for a rhetorical analysis: Rodriguez argues that the children should remain in the same class and he effectively persuades the reader to think the same. He uses fact, audience choice, and personal stories to convince the reader that bilingual education increases a sense of “public separateness” in children.
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